When President Joe Biden issued a proclamation on the last day of February in honor of Women’s History Month, which was then about to commence, he made abortion one of its central themes.
In doing so, he employed a misleading euphemism that has become a common cliche used by pro-abortion politicians: “their own bodies.”
“Last year,” said Biden, “the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, stripping away a constitutional right from the American people and the ability of millions of women to make decisions about their own bodies, putting their health and lives at risk.”
This was not the first time Biden used the term “their own bodies” while advocating for abortion.
Last August, for example, Biden issued a proclamation on Women’s Equality Day, expressing a “commitment” to “protecting women’s rights.”
“This commitment is more important than ever in the wake of the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade and eliminate a woman’s constitutional right to choose,” Biden said.
“As states across the country strip women of their ability to make decisions about their own bodies, families, and futures, my Administration remains dedicated to protecting access to critical reproductive health care, regardless of gender, race, zip code, or income,” he said.
In May 2022, the Senate took up the Women’s Health Protection Act. “This bill,” said its summary, “prohibits governmental restrictions on the provision of, and access to, abortion services.”
All 50 Senate Republicans and Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin voted against ending debate on this bill and thus killed it.
“Republicans in Congress — not one of whom voted for this bill — have chosen to stand in the way of Americans’ rights to make the most personal decisions about their own bodies, families and lives,” Biden said in his response to the vote.
When the Senate was debating the bill, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer echoed Biden’s rhetoric.
“Senate Republicans will face a choice: Either vote to protect the rights of women to exercise freedom over their own bodies or stand with the Supreme Court as 50 years of women’s rights are reduced to rubble before our very eyes,” he said.
Vice President Kamala Harris has also frequently used this same euphemism when discussing the killing of an unborn child.
In May, Harris spoke at a gala for EMILY’s List. On its website, this group says: “We elect Democratic pro-choice women to office.”
“You know, it seems like yesterday, but it was actually a year ago this month when we were all together at this dinner and the Dobbs decision had just been leaked,” Harris said that night. “And there were three words on my mind that night: How dare they.
“How dare they attack our healthcare system,” said Harris. “How dare they attack our fundamental rights. How dare they attack the freedom of the women of America to make decisions about their own bodies.”
Last October, Harris spoke at a Democratic Party event in Texas, where she attacked pro-life political leaders.
“And now, many of these extremist so-called leaders are calling for an abortion ban nationwide. Nationwide,” she said. “They believe government, not women, should make decisions about their own bodies. Well, we do not.”
In September 2021, Harris spoke at a White House “reproductive rights roundtable.” “The president and I are unequivocal in our support of Roe v. Wade and the constitutionality of Roe v. Wade, and the right of women to make decisions for themselves with whomever they choose — about their own bodies,” said Harris. “And, needless to say, the right of women to make decisions about their own bodies is not negotiable. The right of women to make decisions about their own bodies is their decision; it is their body.”
But is it only “their body” that is affected by an abortion?
No. An abortion aborts a human life.
Yes, this human life is carried within the body of the mother, but it is not her own body. It is a separate and unique human being.
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has collected a set of statements made in scientific publications indicating that human life begins at the moment of fertilization. One of these comes from Van Nostrand’s Scientific Encyclopedia, published in 1976.
“At the moment the sperm cell of the human male meets the ovum of the female and the union results in a fertilized ovum (zygote), a new life has begun,” says this scientific encyclopedia.
“Zygote. This cell results from the union of an oocyte and a sperm during fertilization,” says the 2003 edition of The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology. “A zygote is the beginning of a new human being (i.e. embryo).”
Do Biden, Harris, Schumer and other pro-abortion politicians not understand this basic biological fact? Or do they seek to hide it because recognizing it would destroy any argument they could make for legalized abortion — which kills an innocent human life?
Biden himself has made contradictory claims on when human life begins, while maintaining his pro-abortion position. In a 2012 debate with Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan (as this column has noted before), Biden attributed his then-belief that life begins at conception to the Catholic Church — not biological science. “With regard to abortion,” he said, “I accept my church’s position on abortion as what we call a de fide doctrine. Life begins at conception. That’s the church’s judgment. I accept it in my personal life.”
He then said: “I just refuse to impose it on others, unlike my friend here.”
In September 2021, as president, Biden (as Newsweek has reported) expressed the opposite view.
“I respect them — they — those who believe life begins at the moment of conception and all,” Biden said. “I respect that. Don’t agree, but I respect that. I’m not going to impose that on people.”
By constantly shining a light on the irrefutable fact that human life does begin at conception, pro-life political leaders can fully restore this nation’s legal respect for the right to life.